Currently Coveting…May 2020 edition

As a self-professed skincare junkie, it should come as no surprise to you that I perpetually have wish list of products I’m lusting after. I thought it would be interesting for me to share those with you on a regular basis through this series. I own a lot of skincare products but I try to make every purchase a carefully calculated move (usually based on luscious ingredient deck and how I think it will fit in my current routines) but I’m not known to exercise much restraint when it comes to acquiring new cleansers, masks or mists for my collection especially if I’m drawn to a beautifully taken picture which captures vibrant textures. These posts will chronicle my thought process in choosing whether to cave and purchase a product or not but most importantly to justify (to myself mostly!) why I need more potions and lotion in my life.

This series is entirely inspired by the wonderfully eloquent Marie from @andthecolorgreen. In fact, her gorgeous descriptions on her YouTube channel roused me so much that two of the products she was coveting made it to my very own wish list. What can I say, I’m easily influenced!

Both of those products are cult favourites in the green beauty arena and I have read countless number of raves and praises and I must say, I eager to experience the magic myself. The third product, which I will talk about first, excites me the most.  Without much ado, let’s get into what I’m currently coveting.

DEVIANT SKINCARE Cleansing Concentrate-Blue Tansy Edition

Texture picture of Deviant Skin Cleansing Concentrate
Picture from deviantskincare Instagram post

Ok so, confession time. This product doesn’t actually exist. Yet. So before you run to the Deviant Skincare website in search of this sublime cerulean hued enticing balm, let me stop you in your tracks, you won’t find it. Earlier this week, Natalie the co-founder merely hinted that she had been playing around with certain essential oils in the cult classic Cleansing Concentrate and I watched her post spark immense excitement in the skincare community. So how can a product that hasn’t even come to life yet be on my wish list you ask. Well, let me enlighten you.

Last year, I was fortunate to be gifted a full size sample of Cleansing Concentrate. Deviant Skin is a British, indie brand co-founded by Natalie Smyth (none other than the intelligent @roadtoglow, an Instagram influencer who made it her mission to educate her followers and whose knowledge of ingredients never failed to impress me). She debuted her range some years ago with the highly nutritive, anti oxidant-rich Facial oil aimed at sensitive skin and whilst I am a fan, I fell completely fell head over heels for the Cleansing Concentrate (CC). CC is a lusciously textured balm-to-milk first cleanser that has acquired quite the cult following since it’s release, fans include Renée Chow of Gothamista and Liah Yoo, founder of KraveBeauty, a highly popular Korean based skincare brand. Balm cleansers were popularised by Korea and to have such influential women gush about CC is high praise indeed. Unlike most traditional K-beauty sherbets I have experienced, CC contains a myriad of nutrient dense yet balancing oils such hemp, cammelia seed, sacha inchi, blueberry, perilla, borage and broccoli. These not only impart a deliciously herbaceous ‘green’ scent to the balm but also a unique substantive texture, a far cry from the waxiness I’m more attuned to experiencing with many balm cleansers. I am a seasoned user of high quality green skincare products and although I know Natalie certainly does not class her products as being from this niche, CC has the makings of an extremely high quality ‘green’ balm and if not for the inclusion of emulsifiers, this would go straight onto my face as repairing and nourishing leave on product. CC performs beautifully as first cleanser, it doesn’t sting my eyes, removes susncreen and stubborn makeup and has just the perfect amount of slip. It emulsifies and washes off without any residue to leave my skin perfectly balanced and moisturised, Plus she looks the part! The vibrant green from hemp seed, housed in an exquisite and highly luxurious miron container with laboriously hand stamped wax seals simply screams luxurious. I personally am quite drawn to this green scent, (I suspect the broccoli seed oil is mainly responsible), it’s like intuitively craving something healthy for my skin. Natalie specifically chose a formulation devoid of essential oils to cater for the more sensitive-skinned and it’s quite incredible to experience this level of luxury without adding some sort of alluring fragrance. To me this is a testament of how well a product is formulated in terms of texture and performance that scent isn’t a determining factor in customer experience.

Essential oils are a divisive subject, some are adamant to stay away from them and others (like myself) welcome the addition of certain essential oils in their products. Natalie herself said in a post  ‘A couple of years ago, I was vehemently against fragrance, essential oils and alcohol in skincare. I believed that everyone (regardless if you were sensitive or not) would experience low level inflammation and eventually would struggle with barrier issues. Now that I’m wiser, had experience with working alongside a chemist and generally have a better understanding of formulations, I understand that it’s product-dependant”

This statement made me deliriously happy especially as she went on to talk about experimenting with Azule oils (blue tansy, german chamomile and yarrow) and hinted on the possibility of a limited edition version, based on interest. This immediately had me swooning. Blue tansy is one of my favourite scents. My love affair with it started with Blue cocoon obviously but I enjoy that heavenly, ultra decadent and ceremoniously soothing scent in many other products. My skin loves its anti-inflammatory properties (yep, it doesn’t just smell nice  but it has a number of skin beneficial properties).

I didn’t think you could improve on perfection but this would totally be my jam. Form an orderly queue people, CC Blue tansy edition may very well be coming your way and I,for one, cannot wait! Take my money!

LEAHLANI Meli Glow Illuminating Nectar Mask

Picture of Leahlani Meli Glow Illuminating Nectar Mask
Picture from Leahlani.com

I have to admit I was late to the Leahlani game. This sumptuous artisanal brand hails from the beautiful island of Hawaii and utilises powerful organic actives, mostly derived from tropical fruit and unctuous textures that elevate everyday skincare products. Coupled with evocative, exquisite scents, Leahlani is truly a magical brand to experience. In fact, it’s total skincare paradise!

Although my experience of Leahlani is limited (I have only ever used the highly popular Mermaid mask), I find her whole lined extremely enticing. To say that I love the mermaid mask is an understatement, it’s an exquisite vivacious green mask, not unlike a superfood smoothie bursting with Hawaiian spirulina, raw honey, cleansing sea clay and chlorella with the most delicious, intoxicating scent. Highly nourishing, purifying and ultra brightening, I’ve even repurchased it very very recently. However, a video on Leahlani’s IGTV on the making of the Meli Glow Illuminating Nectar mask caught my eye me and since then I’ve been infatuated with this idea of acquiring the slightly higher priced blush pink sister.

Aimed at more mature skin types and guaranteed to impart mega-watt glow, the Meli glow mask seems like a dream come true for me. The ingredient list enchants me the most, Hawaiian raw honey is the star ingredient (I can never have too many honey masks), rose clay, rosehip fruit, starfruit, guava, papaya, strawberry ,banana, passionflower oil, acai oil and Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate (a Vitamin C Ester that is both oil and fat soluble) I’ve heard this works synergistically with the Mermaid mask to deliver even better results. Frankly I don’t need a new mask in my collection and this would be a truly indulgent purchase but I could easily be swayed.

MAYA CHIA The Optimist Hydrating Essence

Picture of Maya Chia The Optimist Hydrating Essence
Picture taken from mayachia.com

Maya Chia is an acclaimed brand in the green beauty sphere and I cannot think of a more perfect introduction to the brand than their Optimist Hydrating Essence. Although I hear many green beauty aficionados talk very highly of Maya Chia, I never actually knew much about them. When I perused their website, I found myself completely in love with the founder’s story, their manifesto and their commitment to high performance ingredients, science and results. Cleverly named and boasting a dizzying array of ultra brightening ingredients including sake (I love fermented products in skincare, very reminiscent of Korean toners and obviously the highly coveted SKII which dried my skin with its alcohol content and left me rather unimpressed), white tea, chia seed (their star, signature ingredient across their line), astaxanthin (a powerful antioxidant I love using and particularly enjoyed in A.florence skincare’s Super serum) and licorice extract. Although banded as a mist, The Optimist isn’t just a host of rather elementary hydrosols and I imagine it would work beautifully as a powerful essence. I’ve read how the brand founder was meticulous in sourcing just the right mister application and this took about 6 months. It’s this sort of attention to detail that really makes me go weak at the knees. And the scent described as ‘citrusy’, ‘green’, and ‘intoxicating’ is just the icing on the cake and I know this will be the perfect mist this summer. I’m very much still debating about this one too but a 30% off code from Naturismo coupled with claims of brightening and hydrating and I’m pretty much sold on this beauty.

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